I am a single mom. I have been for 25 years….pretty much….single that is, I’ve been a Mom that long. I’ve always wanted to travel. When my oldest, Trip (not his name, he picked that!) was old enough that I could leave him on his own we started Travelling. It was great but…he was a teenager…I don’t think I need to tell you the challenges of traveling the world with a teenage boy. Then, just as I was getting to enjoy it all along came my youngest who put a stop to all THAT particular fun.
….or so I thought.
I’ve spent the last five years fantasizing about when I would be able to get on the road again. Basically since around when the Tiny House Revolution started to get really big. My biggest regret was that I hadn’t heard of it a year earlier when I could have bought one. Anyhow, here I am with a 4-1/2 year old and I’ve had an epiphany. I’m going to just do it. I have spent the last 5 years downsizing my hypothetic home to a point where I’ve got everything that I need.
It wasn’t that quick or easy though.
In 2008 I got a “dream” job (read that as the same job I’d been doing for years but, for crazy money and spectacular benefits) and went off to new frontiers to waste away at that. It was alright. I worked ten hours a day for 21 days in a row then had seven days off. I worked and stayed in the same building. Which means my world was pretty small when I was at work. The money was worth it though and on my days off I could go ANYWHERE. So I did. In four years I went to Paris, London, cruised the Caribbean, Florida-twice (with a visit to Disney and Universal), LA (just to see a concert!), Sedona…and so many other little trips. It was wonderful.
However, all the trips didn’t do much for my savings so we (Drayce and I) had to go and live with my parents and my sister and my older son. Sure I could have gotten a job, found a babysitter and moved out on my own like I had with my oldest 20 years earlier but, I found out that I just didn’t have it in me to work for anyone anymore. My BS filter didn’t (doesn’t) just need to be cleaned it’s broken and I have no desire to fix it.
In order to find something I did all sorts of courses and came up with all kinds of home businesses so I could stay home with the baby which is what I REALLY wanted to do but, nothing seemed to work. Then one day my oldest, Trip got a job in my old industry. When they needed some extra help that could walk in and just start with little to no training but only wanted a few hours he suggested me. So, I got a job. The extra money was nice but, I was miserable. I still enjoyed helping people but, not so much working for people. So, that was no good either but, I stuck it out for as long as I needed to.
I still had the issue of a babysitter and a place to live that was just for the two of us (Drayce and I). We REALLY needed our own space. One day I was across the room from a few co-workers who were talking about an apartment that was available that was in my price range. I jumped on the opportunity and in the early Spring of 2017 I moved into the place where I’m living now. It was great and exciting and new and fun and….still not what I wanted.
I kept telling myself that I could stay here until I found something that I could “get on the move” with. I just needed a job that I could do remotely that was good enough to support us. In the meantime I could have a garden (something I really want but, I kill plants. I wish it was different but, it isn’t). I could watch what I wanted on tv. I could go and do and see what I wanted when I wanted without having to answer to, explain myself or justify anything to anyone. This newfound freedom was intoxicating and wonderful but, I just kept buying more and more stuff to fill up this giant space. Soon I started to panic because now I had too much “stuff” that I didn’t want. So why did I keep buying more? That made me wonder what was wrong but, I couldn’t come up with any good answer. Finally I realized that I was filling my home up with “stuff” in an attempt to fill up a void that is within me. Next problem, how do I fill the void?
Right around this time people around me (blogs, newsletters, conversations, facebook) kept talking about how you needed to think back to when you were a child and what you wanted to be when you grew up. Well, the only thing I could think of from when I was little girl was that I wanted to be an Olympic Athlete (and to be honest I’m pretty sure I just said that because I was a figure skater and that’s what people expected (I’ve always been a people pleaser!) the one other thing was that I wanted to be a Princess. Well, that seems as likely as winning the Lottery or finding an exceedingly rich Sugar Daddy.
Then, one day I was helping my oldest with some chores (aka being his chauffeur) and we pulled into a gas station and there was a girl in a jeep that was packed like she lived in it and I just ….sighed. Loudly. It was totally involuntary and I didn’t even know I’d been holding my breath. I had been though. For about five years. Trip looked at me concerned (my 25 year old son actually paid attention to me!! lol) and asked what was wrong. All I could think or say was “all I need is a Jeep, a tent, a camp stove and a water jug. Then I’d be so happy.” He pointed to Ravvy (my beloved vehicle, I don’t really want a Jeep it’s just what The Girl was driving) told me that there were no less than 4 tents that never got used in storage at my parents along with a camp stove and no doubt a water jug. I was stunned. My world had just been upended and I was thrown into a tailspin. I’d heard of people living in their cars but those people were to be pitied, right? Wait though. Suddenly it sounded like freedom and the answer to EVERYTHING (kinda like 42, lol) because it’s what I’ve been wanting to do just on a much smaller scale. Was this something that I could do ….soon?
I’ve been watching tiny houses on video, on tv, blogs, vlogs…..designing my own, gathering ideas and intel for years. DREAMING. Since I first heard of them. I mean, ever since I told my Gram when I was young that I wanted this giant house and she told me “you know you have to look after those big houses”. I told her I intended to have servants for that. She told me that I had better get a small house until the time came that I could afford a Housekeeper at the very least. That has always stuck with me and everytime I see a cute little house it makes me think of her and that conversation.
My plan at the beginning (five years ago when Drayce popped into my world) was to somehow get a little house on a big piece of land. Then I found out that there were little houses on wheels that weren’t big fancy RV’s. Now I was torn. Little house with lots of land and a farm/ranch or a T.H.O.W. (Tiny House On Wheels) and travel wherever I wanted? Heck, why not both?!? Then I saw boats….and WOW!! That opened up so many more things. First, I’d get on the road…or maybe I’d stay put and just wait until I could get a “boat” first? ….why not go for everything?!? A boat that will hold my T.H.O.W. and a piece of property that generated enough income to support itself, me and its caretaker!! That way whenever I got to where ever I was heading I could then go for a drive and see the country and not worry about finances. The biggest problem now was that my dreams were beginning to rely on my winning the lottery or landing a super rich Sugar Daddy and my social life didn’t really look like it was going to lead to the latter.
So…what? Get a job. It would have to be a good one and I wanted it to be something I could do at home and/travel while doing. I’d tried everything though and the usual at home jobs weren’t for me. ….clothing, candles, jewellry. I tried selling the jewellry that I make at the local street markets but, there just isn’t the right customer base here for that to have worked. I am an energy healer but, I had/have no office to hold appointments so, it would have to be online…nothing I tried ever caught on. I also read Tarot and Oracle cards and can channel Spirit. I really enjoy these things. I know quite a bit about crystals and herbs too. I’ve paid for and taken courses in all of these healing modalities and truly enjoy the pursuit of knowledge. I also genuinely enjoy helping people. I just couldn’t find a way (that worked) to get them to know I was there and ready and willing.
Other things then. I always wanted to be an architect. Interior design always fascinated me too. I could take an online course in drafting and another in interior design then talk to companies that made and sold tiny houses and offer them my services! Great idea. Couldn’t ever get into it. Next. Onto what jobs are good pay and something I can do at home and preferably online? Bookkeepers and travel agents. I am experienced in both of these areas. I decided to start with a Travel Agent course and figured that would help me to get work. That turned out to be a wash too. After that I stumbled onto a site that listed a bunch of different places to apply that hired people with my skill set to work from home online. I started applying to everything that I could find….hoping. I finally got an email. To make a long story short I’m pretty sure I got hooked into a fraud scheme. I’m currently hoping that it turns out ok.
I now have a Mystery Shopper job that doesn’t pay much (we’re talking pennies) but, at least it’s a free meal with a nice drive and a little paperwork.
Then….one fateful afternoon….I saw The Girl in the Jeep and that breath that I’d been holding in for five long years let loose a flood of ideas and arguments and rationalizations that led me to believing that Drayce and I could actually pull off living in Ravvy and that we could do it (fairly comfortably) on the pittance of an income that I currently have.
That decision/realization happened on May 1st. It is now the early hours of May 3rd (oh, I should be in bed) and my journey has begun….but, where do I start? ….and is it the right choice?
Join me while I figure out the answers to this and many more questions that I have and more that I haven’t thought of.
This has after all been one of the few constant things in my life for the last few years. I also get this amazing bubble of excitement when I think of the day that I finally get to walk away from everything that is holding me to one spot.
LET THE ADVENTURES BEGIN!!!